03 July 2009

Staycation Research #1: Enlightment

Yes, the economy is changing our research. Libraries, archives, and courthouses are not open as many hours. Some knowledgeable staff members are no longer employed. We are not doing as much distance travel for research purposes. At the end of this summer I am traveling to Little Rock for the 2009 Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference. I don't want to miss that. On my way there and back I will be combining that and some on-site research in several localities. That is my big trip of the summer.

Most of the other summer and fall research time is being spent near home in what many have termed "staycations." I have already spent time at my nearby county branch library in the reference and history sections. What else can we do this summer and fall to stay nearer to home and save for the major trips?
  • Catch up on your reading. What historical and genealogical books sit on your shelves that you could pick up and actually read from cover to cover?
  • Have some relatives that are hesitant to share with you? How about just sending them a newsy letter or email telling them about what you have found on the past generations. Let them know what your branch of the family is up to. Ask them how their garden is doing or how the grandchildren are doing. Make it light and don't ask them for a single thing. This could also be called "buttering them up" for the requests you may make in a few months!
  • Does a local library (public, historical, and/or genealogical) give away duplicate books, periodical, or have a sale over the summer? Pick up some good historical and genealogical reading.
  • When did you last review the files on your Griffin family. Pull them out and you will be ready to travel some week in the future.
  • Volunteer in the local history room or archive so that others will find it open when they visit.
Watch for more ideas in future posts.

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